In X-Men Apocalypse, ancient mutant Apocalypse awakens and plans to take over the world. Can the new X-Men stop him? More importantly, who gets to drop the F bomb this time?
Did you know that X-Men Apocalypse is the ninth movie in X-Men franchise? That puts it around the Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday region of movie sequels. Are the movies comparable? Not a chance but after walking out of the cinema there was a slight nagging feeling that Bryan Singer might need to step away from the X-Men franchise for a movie or two just to let things breath for a while.
Don’t get me wrong, X-Men Apocalypse is a fine movie border lining a good movie. In fact there are some really great sequences on display, the new characters are mostly enjoyable and the returning cast are top-notch. But like Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice there were some server plot holes and moments that will leaving you going “wait, what! How / why is that happening?”.
The plot goes a little something like this; Apocalypse, the first and most powerful mutant awakens after thousands of years. He is disillusioned with the world as he finds it and recruits a team of powerful mutants to cleanse mankind and create a new world order, over which he will reign. As the fate of the Earth hangs in the balance, Raven, with the help of Professor X, must lead the X-Men to stop their nemesis and save mankind from destruction.How exciting does that sound?
To be entirely honest it really is an exciting movie, the opening sequence is great and raises plenty of questions about where the movies villain came from. We get to see each character get a moment in the sun to show off their abilities. The effects are top-notch. Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence and Nicholas Hoult continue to bridge the gap between over the top comic book action and great acting.
Tye Sheridan and Kodi Smit-McPhee bring a certain amount of swagger to roles of Scott Summers / Cyclops and Nightcrawler respectively. Sheridan plays the young Cyclops as somewhat of a jerk, someone who has a definite chip on his shoulder. This comes across even before his powers manifests but once he is trust into action you see elements of the future leader of the X-Men shine through.
Sophie Turner, Game of Thrones Sansa Stark, is hampered by a clumsy script with her character being rather annoying during the first two-thirds of the movie but she becomes more interesting in the final third. There are even some hints at where they will be taking Jean Grey in the next movies.
The “villains” of the movie round out the rest of the major cast. Like X-Men Days of Future Past, most of the new characters featured in the trailers and promotional material are in the movie for about 10 or so minutes. We get glimpses of Storm, Angel / Archangel and Psylocke in their costume but we’re left wanting to see more of them.
Oscar Isaac as En Sabah Nur / Apocalypse is a good choice as the villain as he has the potential of being the Thanos or Darkseid of the Fox / X-Men universe so it’s strange that they used him so quickly in the series, although it’s nine movies in, but this movie didn’t do him justice.
The biggest gripe many reviewers have had, and myself included, is that the plot is rather much all over the place and there is too much emphasis on spectacle over substance. There is one plot detour about two-thirds of the way in that feels a little forced but it’s swiftly tied into the main plot which makes it easier to swallow, just about. The other standout issue is the script which is chunky at times and there were some moments that were groan worthy.
Apart from those minor issues, I really enjoyed the movie. The Quicksilver sequence is outstanding. The sequence involving *SPOILERS* Wolverine is actually very interesting as it plants the seeds of making audiences aware that he is actually a killing machine when needed. James McAvoy is great once again as Professor X and even gets to repeat a piece of dialogue from Patrick Stewart’s first movie.
Another stand out part is the fashion and the hair styles. Once again excellently 80’s but still not as bad as you might remember.
Stick around for the post credits as they have a sting to set up the next movie. No spoilers but I did feel that it would’ve been better to introduce this character first then go into this movie but that’s just my opinion.
Is X-Men Apocalypse as good as X-Men Days of Future Past. No. Is it as bad as X-Men Origins: Wolverine, god no. I imagine that it sits about number three on my list, just after the aforementioned X-Men Days of Future Past and my personal favourite X-Men 2. Worth going to see, definitely.